By  on November 17, 2009

Tobi, a small boutique in San Francisco, is the first to use a virtual dressing room that could appeal to larger retailers looking for new ways to attract and entertain shoppers.

To use the technology, called Fashionista, a woman stands in front of her camera-equipped laptop or desktop computer and her image appears on the screen. She can then choose items to “try on” by pointing to icons on the screen. A top or dress will appear to be superimposed over her body, and she can click whether she likes it or not. The software doesn’t simulate fit, but if the style looks good, the shopper can snap a photo and send it to a friend or her Facebook page. The dressing room automatically suggests other items she might like. A future version will let two women shop side by side on screen, even if they are miles apart.

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